Colleagues Remember Retired JCJC Instructor Paula Craft

Written By: Marlo Dorsey
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Date Submitted: 2011-04-25 16:13:28

Jones County Junior College mourns the loss of Paula Craft, a retired speech instructor at the college for more than 30 years. Paula and her husband Carroll Craft died in a traffic accident Saturday, April 23, 2011. 
Craft joined the Jones family in 1970 as a faculty member and retired in 2002.  She taught thousands of students at the college over the course of her career.  She is fondly remembered by her colleagues.
Jones Humanities Division Chair Cheryl Windham enjoyed Mrs. Craft's style of teaching when she was a student in her speech class. 
"Paula Craft was 'Ms. Tilllman' to me when I was a student in her speech class at Jones, and to this day, I remember her bubbly, vibrant style of teaching as she made speech fun and, more importantly, bearable, considering that most of us were terrified of public speaking," recalls Windham.
Once Windham became a faculty member at Jones, she interacted with her as a colleague and remembers several of Craft's endearing qualities.
"Years later when I became her colleague, I grew to love and respect her all the more because of her kindness; her helpful, compassionate advice; and her ability to give an honest opinion. I well recall her little footsteps echoing up and down the hall in the Center for Humanities, always at full speed, always wearing those wonderful, whimsical reading glasses and a big, cheerful smile," added Windham. "This is such a sad, tragic loss. Our heartfelt prayers and sympathy go out to the family and friends of Paula and Carroll Craft."
Jones Division Chair Dr. Ronald Bishop remembers Craft as a compassionate and organized  member of the faculty. 
"Paula Craft was a popular teacher, a valued colleague,  and a good friend. She demanded much of her students, but did so with compassion and genuine concern. Though most students dread and postpone taking speech class, her classes filled and students were glad they studied with Mrs. Craft.  Paula was conscientious and disciplined. She lived out her faith through her work and touched thousands of lives along the way. She will be missed greatly by those who knew her," said Bishop.
Visitation for Paula and Carroll Craft is today 5-8 p.m., at Memory Chapel in Laurel. Funeral services will be held at 11:30 a.m. on Tuesday, April 26, at Highland Baptist Church in Laurel.


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